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British Wildlife is the leading natural history magazine in the UK, providing essential reading for both enthusiast and professional naturalists and wildlife conservationists. Published eight times a year, British Wildlife bridges the gap between popular writing and scientific literature through a combination of long-form articles, regular columns and reports, book reviews and letters.

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Good Reads  Natural History  General Natural History

The Hard Way Discovering the Women Who Walked Before Us

By: Susannah Walker(Author)
295 pages, no illustrations
Publisher: Unbound
The Hard Way
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  • The Hard Way ISBN: 9781800183452 Hardback Jun 2024 In stock
Price: £16.99
About this book Customer reviews Biography Related titles

About this book

Why is it radical for women to walk alone in the countryside, when men have been doing so for centuries? The Hard Way is a powerful and illuminating book about addressing this imbalance, reclaiming fearlessness and diving into the history of the landscape from a woman's point of view.

Setting off to follow the oldest paths in England, the Ridgeway and the Harrow Way, Susannah Walker comes across artillery fire, concern from passing policemen and her own innate fear of lone figures in the distance: a landscape shaped by men, from prehistoric earthworks to today's army bases.

But along the way, Susannah finds Edwardian feminists, rebellious widows, forgotten writers and artists, as well as all their anonymous sisters who stayed at home throughout history. They become her companions over 135 miles of walking, revealing how much, or how little, has changed for women now.

Customer Reviews


Susannah Walker lives in Somerset and studied English Literature at Cambridge followed by History of Design at the Royal College of Art and Victoria & Albert Museum. After working as a curator and writer, she worked as a television producer and director for the BBC and Channel 4. She now combines freelance writing and lecturing with running a charity, Make Space for Girls, which campaigns for better parks and public spaces for teenage girls. She is the author of several books including The Life of Stuff, which was shortlisted for the James Tait Black biography prize, and The Hard Way.

By: Susannah Walker(Author)
295 pages, no illustrations
Publisher: Unbound
Media reviews

"An evocative and inspiring exploration of the lives of women who refuse to be tied indoors by domesticity. The Hard Way is a powerful manifesto for women who long to walk alone – and safely – in the countryside."
– Dr Sharon Blackie, author of If Women Rose Rooted

"Exposes the barriers to women having unfettered access to the great outdoors, free from fear and liberated from the domestic sphere [...] This is an urgent call to make the British countryside welcoming to everyone."
– Guy Shrubsole, author of Who Owns England?

"Simmering with quiet rage, and passionate about the right of women to explore as freely as men, the book is a fascinating personal journey along some of England's oldest paths."
– Sophie Pierce, author of The Green Hill

"Thought provoking, rich and interesting [...] Susannah takes the reader on a deep dive through this landscape by exploring the ancient roads that traverse this world."
– Andrew Ziminski, author of The Stonemason

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